KHIMKI, Russia — A lawyer for WNBA star Brittney Griner, who’s jailed in Russia on drug prices, on Friday offered a courtroom with a physician’s letter recommending she use hashish to deal with ache.
Griner a two-time Olympic gold medalist and standout for the Phoenix Mercury was arrested at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport in February after customs officers stated they discovered vape canisters containing hashish oil in her baggage. She faces as much as 10 years in jail if convicted of transportation of medication.
Griner final week in courtroom acknowledged possessing the canisters however stated she had no legal intent and claimed the canisters’ presence was resulting from hasty packing. In Russia’s judicial system, admitting guilt would not mechanically finish a trial.
Because the responsible plea, her courtroom classes have centered on in-person and written testimonies to her good character and athletic prowess.
“The attending doctor gave Brittney suggestions for the usage of medical hashish,” lawyer Maria Blagovolina stated. “The permission was issued on behalf of the Arizona Division of Well being.”
The protection on Friday additionally submitted exams she underwent as a part of an anti-doping test, which did not detect any prohibited substances in her system.
The following listening to of Griner’s case was scheduled for July 26.
“Within the hearings yesterday and as we speak, what grew to become very clear is the large quantity of respect and admiration each in the US and right here in Russia the place Miss Griner has been enjoying basketball for seven years, not just for her skilled achievements however for her character and integrity,” U.S. Embassy cost d’affaires Elizabeth Rood stated outdoors the courthouse within the Moscow suburb of Khimki, the place the airport is positioned.
The director and crew captain of UMMC Ekaterinburg, for which Griner performs within the WNBA offseason, testified on her behalf on Thursday.
U.S. President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken have stated they’re doing all they may to win her launch, in addition to that of different People the U.S. considers “wrongly detained” by Russia, together with former Marine Paul Whelan, who’s serving 16 years on an espionage conviction.
Washington might have little leverage with Moscow, although, due to sturdy animosity over its navy operation in Ukraine.
Russian media have speculated that Griner could possibly be swapped for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout, nicknamed “the Service provider of Demise,” who’s serving a 25-year sentence within the U.S. after being convicted of conspiracy to kill U.S. residents and offering assist to a terrorist group.
Russia has agitated for Bout’s launch for years. However the vast discrepancy within the seriousness of their instances might make such a commerce unpalatable to Washington. Others have recommended that Griner could possibly be traded together with Whelan, who’s serving 16 years in Russia on an espionage conviction that the U.S. has described as a setup.
The State Division’s designation of Griner as wrongfully detained strikes her case beneath the supervision of its particular presidential envoy for hostage affairs, successfully the federal government’s chief hostage negotiator. The classification has irritated Russia.
Requested about the potential for Griner being swapped for a Russian jailed within the U.S., Deputy International Minister Sergei Ryabkov, the senior Russian diplomat, has famous that till her trial is over “there aren’t any formal or procedural causes to speak about any additional steps.”
Ryabkov warned that U.S. criticism, together with the outline of Griner as wrongfully detained and dismissive feedback concerning the Russian judicial system, “makes it tough to interact in detailed dialogue of any attainable exchanges.”
Griner’s detention has been licensed by way of Dec. 20, suggesting the trial might final months. Griner’s attorneys, nevertheless, stated they anticipate it to conclude across the starting of August.